The Promise of Early Adolescence: Rethinking Middle Level Education to Reflect Our Understanding of Adolescent Development
Presenter: Nancy E. Hill, Joanna Lee Williams, Lisa Harrison

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Over the past several decades, research has fundamentally changed our understanding of how adolescents develop, grow, and learn. The report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, The Promise of Adolescence: Realizing Opportunity for All Youth, provides ample evidence that changes in brain structure and connectivity that happen in adolescence present young people with unique opportunities for positive, life-shaping development, and for recovery from past adversity. In this webinar, we dive specifically into the promise of early adolescence, drawing findings and recommendations from the report to explore the principles of young adolescent development and identify ways that they can be applied in the middle school years.


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Nancy E. Hill, Ph.D.
Nancy Hill is a developmental psychologist at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her research focuses on ethnicity, culture and context and identifies unique and interactive ways in which these constructs influence parenting beliefs, parenting practices, and children mental health and academic adjustment.
Joanna Lee Williams, Ph.D.
Joanna Lee Williams is an associate professor in the Department of Leadership, Foundations, and Policy at the University of Virginia. She is a faculty affiliate with Youth-Nex: The U.Va. Center to Promote Effective Youth Development, and with the Center for Race and Public Education in the South.
Lisa Harrison
Lisa Harrison is an associate professor of middle childhood education at Ohio University where she also serves as the middle childhood program coordinator. In addition, Dr. Harrison is the faculty liaison to Trimble Middle School. She currently serves as co-editor of AMLE's professional journal, Middle School Journal, and she serves on AMLE's Professional Preparation Advisory Committee. She has presented at several national conferences and published work in various middle level outlets. Dr. Harrison is a former middle school mathematics teacher in Brooklyn, NY.
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